It’s a perilous journey these days to go from girlhood to adolescence. As a therapist, I see the roadblocks that young girs have to navigate in order to make it to young adulthood with their self-esteem intact. Whether it is the bombardment from the media of unrealistic body images or the overly mature roles models that are offered up, these young girls have a lot to contend with. They endure a great deal of pressure at a time when they need a great deal of space to just be young.
So. it was with great pleasure that I watched girls behaving gladly in a local talent show competition.
I had the opportunity to watch the semi-finals of Delco Idol Jr last Sunday night. The singing competition was held at the Media Theatre in Media, PA and was an all girl semi-final. The remaining boys had been eliminated the week before and now a select group of 18 was left to battle it out for the final 15 spots.
I was touched and inspired by what I saw that evening and it had nothing to do with the actual competition. What struck me was the range of girls who performed one by one alone on the stage. From seven years old to thirteen, they came in all shapes and sizes. Some sold their musical numbers with the confidence of a veteran performer. Others walked to the center of the stage, planted their feet and just sang their hearts out. I admired their their courage and noted their innocence.
When interviewed by the master of ceremonies, they spoke of their favorite music or pets. They dedicated songs to their grandmothers and grandfathers and proudly showed of hair do’s styled by mothers and aunts. They giggled and shyly waved to family members in the audience who came with signs and glow sticks to cheer them on.
When the group going on to the finals was announced one by one, they hugged each other and held hands. They were young girls shining in the spot light with no pressure to be anything else but who they were-just girls.